no spam, unsubscribe anytime.
The 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division arrived in Afghanistan in December for a one year long deployment. Sgt. Nicholas Dickhut went with the Brigade, but when he arrived in Afghanistan he was attached to the famous 82nd Airborne Division as a Forward Observer and died last Monday from wounds received in an enemy attack on his unit.
Forward Observers are the eyes of the infantry, way out front, often deep into enemy territory. Their job is to support ground maneuver forces by directing artillery, mortar fire, air support, or naval gunfire during combat missions. They must be experts at map reading, the technologies of modern artillery and air support weaponry. They must get out front undetected and be able to communicate accurate information by whatever means is available to them, in order to protect and guide their unit's ground efforts. They must also be highly trained in self-defense. This is a highly skilled job that requires both intelligence and solid instincts. Forward Observers are often high priority targets for enemy forces as they control a great amount of firepower, and are within visual range of the enemy.
Sgt. Dickhut's Captain, Lawrence Csaszar, said of him, "Sgt. Dickhut was not only incredibly talented as a Forward Observer, he possessed great maturity and intelligence. His positive attitude and eagerness to share lessons learned made him an invaluable member of our Company."
Dickut's friend, Spc. Connor Higgins said, "He was easily the best Forward Observer I have ever met in the U.S. Army...He was surrounded by soldiers who loved and respected him. I'm sure the soldiers he trained will carry on in his footsteps." (both quotes are from an article in the Seattle Times May 5, 2012)
What greater praise could be given to a soldier and a man? Sgt. Nicholas Dickhut did his duty as a soldier better than most, but more than that, he was also a good man who cared about his friends and passed on what he had learned to others so that they could be the best they could be too.
Sgt. Dickhut was 23 years old. He was born in Rochester, Minnesota. Rest in Peace good soldier. You have made a difference.